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How To Find And Purify Water In The Wilderness

Last Updated: July 31, 2022
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Water is generally the first thing to be taken in a survival situation.


Because, in a survival scenario, having enough drinkable water is without question the most important thing you can have. Learn this one crucial survival skill so you may survive in most circumstances.

How To Find And Filter Water

Humans can go weeks without food and live productive lives in primitive shelters, but we can die within hours – minutes, if the heat is severe enough.

The fact is…The human body composition is roughly 60% water, and it must be constantly rehydrated. Water is present in all bodily tissues.

The body’s tissues are meant to contain a certain amount of water. Dehydration occurs if the proportion of water carried in the tissues falls below normal.

Dehydration prompts us to seek water. The first indication of dehydration is through the mouth. We sense dryness when something is out of balance with the water movement in our bodies.

Thirst is the condition in which humans are distressed because they are dehydrated.

People are frequently preoccupied with something else when they first feel a thirst pang. Rather of going to the water fountain or the kitchen sink, they put off their journey.

The body’s second indication is a mild headache that will worsen over time.

Other dehydration symptoms include:

  • reduced urinary output
  • lethargy
  • the inability to perspire or produce tears
  • nausea
  • rapid heart rate
  • tingling of the skin
  • high body temperatures
  • hallucinations
  • heat exhaustion
  • eventually death

When one finds oneself in a survival situation, having the ability to find and purify water is critical.

Whether you’ve been caught in a snowstorm or have suffered an accident on the trails and fell into a ravine, having access to clean water should be one of your top priorities.

The dehydration process begins as soon as you become stranded, injured, or in need of rescue. In addition, because you’ll have to go out and explore more in order to survive, you’ll dehydrate faster than normal.

So it’s important to find, purify, filter and drink water continuously when in survival mode.

During a trek into the backcountry, no one wants to drink water that will make them sick, so the most effective approach to avoid drinking contaminated water is to treat or filter it first.

There are no magic bullets for making this happen in every situation, but there are a few strategies that can get the job done. They are as follows:

What To Look For

Gravity, Greenery, & Ground

​If you find yourself in mountainous terrain, keep in mind that water always flows downhill. In the gaps where hills meet, look for streams and creeks to help you find your way.

It does not imply that there is no water flow if you can’t see it. Take a few minutes to listen for the sound of water cascading over rocks, then follow the sound. Look for clues of life if you can’t see or hear the regenerative liquid.

Fresh water is more likely to attract animals and insects. Insects, on the other hand, can be found in nearly any climate. Digging a hole in wet dirt may occasionally reveal some groundwater as a last resort. Just keep in mind that if you have to dig into damp soil, it’s best not to drink the water straight from the ground

Always Beware of This

Beware Of Stagnant H20

Remember that holes in the road or sidewalks are common, and wet surfaces attract mosquitoes. Also, be wary of standing water since it is likely to be chalked full of all types of parasites and germs. The same goes for pooled water in streams.

Your best chance of finding safe drinking water is generally in areas with a powerful current, since all the stuff that will almost certainly make you sick spreads wherever water does not flow.

Mosquitoes breed in stagnant water, which includes anything that a mosquito might be carrying as the bloodsucking insects develop in stagnant pools. Avoid standing water at all costs if possible. Both malaria and dengue fever, two highly damaging illnesses, are among the risks of standing water. Anything else a mosquito may carry

What You Should Do

Boil It If You Can

You should always try to purify any water that looks like it might be flowing.

Yes, you’ll need to wait longer, but the alternative is potentially contracting a parasite or deadly germs that could result in a far more serious problem.​

If you have the resources to construct a fire and a vessel in which to boil water, this is almost always the most secure and dependable method for removing any pathogenic contaminants from the liquid.

You could try bringing a personal water filter or purification tablets (which you can get at many outdoor shops) if nothing else, but drinking questionable water may be your only choice.

This is still a last-ditch effort. If you have the resources, go through any and all naturally gathered water – even snow or ice – to try and purify it. The danger isn’t worth it if you don’t have to deal with it.

I realize it’s an overused cliche to say;

“It could mean the difference between life and death”.

However, in the instance of locating water in a survival scenario, it’s both significant and correct. It’s past time you learned this important survival skill and got the appropriate water filtration tools.

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There are two things you must accomplish to master any skill (particularly Basic Survival Techniques).

  1. Learn
  2. Practice

That’s it.

You may end up being skilled at both if you execute these methods correctly. It’s not a question of if, but rather when. If you understand but don’t practice, you’re book smart but skillless. You could explain how to survive, yet you’ll flunk miserably in a real-world scenario.

If you merely mess around without first learning, then you’re simply playing. You will not be practicing the essential survival skills or becoming competent in this key survival skill we’ve discussed today.

That’s for certain.

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